Iodine is very important for thyroid hormone production. Insufficient iodine intake can lead to health issues, including hypothyroidism. You can use this simple test at home to find out if you need to focus on getting more iodine in your diet.
- 2% U.S.P Iodine Tincture (like this)
IMPORTANT NOTE: This test is not for those with thyroid conditions (Hashimoto’s, Grave’s, etc) or for those sensitivities to iodine!
- Using the 2% Iodine Tincture, paint a 2 inch by 2 inch square on your forearm and fill it in.
- Take note of the time you painted the iodine on yourself.
- Avoid water exposure or heavy rubbing of the area for at least 24 hours.
- Watch the patch and note how long it takes to fade and/or disappear.
Reading your results:
- Excellent: stain is still very visible after 24 hours
- Sufficient: stain still slightly visible after 24 hours
- Deficient: stain disappears before 24 hours (the quicker it disappears, the more severe the deficiency).
How To Get More Iodine In Your Diet:
The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for adults is 150 micrograms per day, while those who are pregnant or breastfeeding need slightly more (220-290 mcg).
- Increase your intake of iodine-rich seafood or dairy products.
- Add very small amounts of seaweed to your diet, like that of kelp or dulse. A favorite way of mine to do this is by making your own sea salt infused with dulse.
- If you choose to use iodine supplementation, it is best to do so under the supervision of your doctor or healthcare practitioner.
You can retest after supplementing with iodine rich foods after about a month or so to watch how your iodine deficiency improves over time.
Always check with your Doctor, Naturopath or Endocrinologist before starting a supplement regimen to identify any drug interactions and contraindications.
Nutritional Therapy Association
Oregon State University, Linus Pauling Institute, Micronutrient Information Center: Iodine
Photo Credit: Butternutrition.com